Monday, August 18, 2008

Bougainvillea at the Bus Stop

This bus stop comes with bougainvillea (at least I think that's what it is...plant experts should feel free to correct me!). It's just another example for me of how it is especially easy in Jerusalem to witness the close proximity of beauty and the mundane.

It's a place where the dove is both a symbol of peace and the yearning for it and, well, basically a pigeon...except they don't seem to flock like pigeon's do. But even without the flocks they are just about the commonest bird sight here in the City of Peace (the nearest competition are the two-toned Hooded Crows). I can see two doves from my window as I type, one perched on an antenna and another on top of a דוד שמש/dood shemesh/solar powered water heater (which seems to come standard with most apartments here).

The other day, a dove came and perched on the windowsill with a tiny branch in its mouth (really!). It looked into the apartment as if it wanted to know if this would be a good place to nest. I told it there were already people living here. It flew away.

Speaking of seeing ourselves in animal behavior, my favorite new verb of the day: להאניש/l'he'enish/to anthropomorphize, a causitive verb using a form the word for "person."

I took a picture of white jasmine flowers growing next to red pomegranates, but my phone said the picture took up too much memory to send it anywhere. I am starting to know at which points on which sidewalks, I am likely to catch a whiff of jasmine or some other sweetness. The even commoner smell of various animal droppings...much harder to predict the when or where. Aswirl in the mix of holiness, fear, beauty and dirt, I am still trying to enjoy the flowers.

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